Mars

Where water will be easiest to find on Mars Life

Where water will be easiest to find on Mars

The more resources we have to transport to our neighboring planet, the more expensive a manned mission to Mars will be. Current concepts therefore rely on the human inhabitants using the resources that Mars makes available to them. On the one hand, there is the carbon dioxide atmosphere, from which methane can be obtained as fuel for the return flight - and on the other, there are water and ice deposits from which oxygen and drinking water can be obtained. It is already known that Mars is not completely dry. While the atmosphere is available everywhere (although it becomes…
Life on Mars: Search deeper! Life

Life on Mars: Search deeper!

Has Mars ever had a surface that is friendly to life? Planetary scientists are struggling to find enough remnants of a former atmosphere. Even if one considers that Mars may have lost a large part of its oxygen and water to space, gaps remain - even for the past. On the other hand, there are of course the valleys, dry waters and river systems still visible today, into which water would have had to have flowed billions of years ago. And if the water on the surface was not frozen, the temperatures must have been pleasant. Even if this…
Megafloods on Ancient Mars Life

Megafloods on Ancient Mars

Surface water or even rain clouds are sought in vain on Mars today. In the early days of the planet, however, things looked different. Four billion years ago, a kind of megaflood could have swept over the Red Planet, as a joint project of scientists from Jackson State University, Cornell, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of Hawaii shows. It is based on data collected by NASA's Curiosity Rover, which investigated the Gale Crater on Mars. In the paper, published in Scientific Reports, the researchers describe how a megaflood - probably triggered by the heat of a meteorite…
Salt lakes under the south pole of Mars Life

Salt lakes under the south pole of Mars

Several liquid deposits of different sizes have been discovered by researchers below the south pole of Mars, according to a publication published in Nature Astronomy. The results suggest that there may be lakes below the south pole of Mars that remain liquid due to their high salt concentration. It is known that subglacial lakes exist in the terrestrial Antarctic. Previous research has shown a similar lake below the southern Martian polar region, which was discovered by the Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionosphere Sounding (MARSIS) on board the spacecraft Mars Express. The presence of a subglacial lake could…
When the sky glows green on Mars Mars

When the sky glows green on Mars

After the Sun sets on the Red Planet and temperatures fall below -62 degrees Celsius, part of its atmosphere begins to glow. It starts at an altitude of about 70 kilometers shortly after sunset. The spots, which are up to 1000 kilometers large and shine as brightly as the Northern Lights on Earth, then move at about 300 kilometers per hour across the night sky. Future astronauts, however, won’t be able to marvel at them, unfortunately, because the spectacle plays out only in the ultraviolet range, which is invisible to the human eye. Researchers chose a green color for…
Salty Mars puddles no place for life Life

Salty Mars puddles no place for life

On the surface of the Red Planet, normal bodies of water cannot exist for long periods of time under today’s conditions. It’s possible, however, that very salty “puddles” or reservoirs of liquid (“brines” in technical language) could remain stable on or just below the surface for some amount of time, especially during the Mars spring and summer months, when ice deposits thaw. Whether these puddles are suitable for life as we know it, however, remains questionable. In 2018, reports sparked headlines that these brines might have conditions that are friendly to life after all. One factor speaking for this…
Transforming Mars into a second Earth – a simple trick Life

Transforming Mars into a second Earth – a simple trick

In the journal Nature Astronomy, researchers have presented an exciting method for transforming Mars into a fertile planet: they want to cover our neighbor with a thin layer made of silicate aerogels. How is that supposed to work? The Red Planet has two properties that make the existence of life on its surface more difficult. First, it is significantly too cold there, and second, life can be destroyed by the cosmic radiation that is incident on the Mars surface in much higher amounts than on the Earth due to Mars’s thin atmosphere. If we wanted to create Earth-like conditions, for…
Fly to Mars with NASA – on board the next Mars rover Mars

Fly to Mars with NASA – on board the next Mars rover

Right now, not only can you send a postcard into space, but you can also send your name to Mars – on board NASA’s Mars 2020 rover. All you need to need is enter your name and e-mail address at go.nasa.gov/Mars2020Pass. Your name will then be etched onto a microchip that is mounted on the rover. Your name will be arranged on a line that is 75 micrometers high. This will allow NASA to etch a million names on the chip. 2 million names flew along with the Insight probe. As a reward you’ll get a virtual boarding pass…